You can write the most entertaining and informative blog posts, create the funniest videos, or craft the most unique and engaging images — but if no one looks at them, it doesn’t matter.
That’s why creating content is just part of content marketing. For successful content, you also need content marketing optimization.
What Is Content Marketing Optimization?
Optimization is the process of making something as effective or functional as possible. When people hear the phrase content marketing optimization, they often automatically think search engine optimization (SEO). But as Heidi Cohen points out, content marketing optimization goes beyond search. It also means creating content people want to read or engage with, that works on a range of devices, that can be consumed, and that people share on social media.
Common Content Marketing Optimization Techniques
Increasing the effectiveness of your content often involves a variety of tactics and techniques. Content marketing optimization often includes the following:
Step one of optimizing your content is knowing who your customers/audience members are and what they want. Creating buyer personas gives you insight into who you’re talking to and what those people want from you.
Connecting with influencers
Trust is everything when it comes to content marketing. One way your brand can build trust with its audience is to connect with and work with influencers, who have a lot of sway over people’s opinions. Connecting with influencers can mean anything from having them create a guest blog post or video for your brand to interviewing them for your brand’s blog.
Using SEO best practices
While search isn’t the be all and end all of content marketing optimization, it’s still something to keep in mind. Optimize your content for search engines. Remember that keywords’ responsiveness and quality all have an effect on how well your content ranks in the search results.
Using social media best practices
People can come across your content via a search or social media. Optimizing your content so that people want to share it on social can mean using the right hashtags, including an image, and making the headlines short and clickable.
Making the content consumable
How your content appears on the screen affects how well people engage with it — if they engage with it at all. Break up blocks of text, use things like numbered lists and bullet points, and use a decently sized font (no 8 or 10 pt for you!). If you’re making videos, keep them short (around two or three minutes). Whether you’re making videos, blog posts or infographics, use clear, easy-to-understand language.
Benefits of Optimizing Your Content
One of the biggest benefits of optimizing your content is that doing so increases the likelihood of people reading/viewing it, and of it making an impact. The average person encounters 20 content marketing opportunities per day, according to the 2017 State of the Creator Economy study. When you’ve successfully optimized your brand’s content, you’ve increased the likelihood of your content being among those 20 opportunities each day.
Another benefit of optimizing your content is that doing so gives you a chance to establish your brand as a leader or authority in your field or industry. For example, if you create a blog post on “The Best Ways to Do X” and that blog post earns the number one spot in the search results, gets shared thousands of times on social media, and gets linked to by multitudes of other blogs, you’ve gone and established your brand as the authority on the best ways to do X.
Finally, optimized content is content that’s likely to perform better. When your content performs better — whether that means generating more leads or converting more customers — your brand is going to be more likely to see the value of content marketing, and will be more likely to continue to use it in the future.